Self-denial and sacrifice are unpopular ideas in our culture. Even as Christians, it can be all too easy to make temporary happiness our goal. We can doubt that the call to take up our cross and follow Jesus is actually for our good.
In this honest book, experienced pastor Julian Hardyman discusses the relationship between serving, ministry and joy. He writes openly of how his own experience of suffering has shaped his ministry. He explains that pain and suffering are not only to be expected, but are the tools that God uses to equip us to serve others joyfully.
A joy to read – Really thankful for this little book that spurred me on to keep serving and to keep counting the cost of ministry, at a tired point of term. The author is refreshing in his honesty about unjoyful circumstances, and yet wonderfully shows how he has been able to serve joyfully through and in the midst of them. It’s a fantastic encourager to keep dying to self and keep living for Christ, and as a mum with 3 small children, I was able to read it in little more than an afternoon which is a key criteria of a good book right now! Sarah Dargue
Joy through suffering – This book is written for ministers, but is helpful for anyone serving in a local church. Hardyman is very honest about his struggles and that the Christian life, especially as a minister, is taking up the cross daily. But the way of the cross is the way of joy. At 99 pages it is a very quick read. Buy it to read yourself or buy it for your pastor. Stephen Ayre
Excellent -The Joy of Service by Julian Hardyman is an excellent primer for church leaders. Honest and helpful. Jonathan Thomas
A dutiful drudge learns how to be a joyful servant -I think this book will be helpful for anyone who wants to serve Christ and be a communicator of the Gospel and is not limited to those who are in full-time ministry. I was helped by the teaching on becoming a servant of the word of God and realised that too often I had come to the word and expected it to serve me. Whilst Julian emphasises that spreading the word requires service and self-denial, he makes the point that the process leads to joy and self-fulfilment as we focus on Jesus and find our joy in Him and His salvation. Susan Arstall